It'll be great to see you there SeishinKibou!
This will be my third year, and I'll also be going to the ball! (Hopefully in my Princess Serenity costume.) Manifest is a really nice Convention, some of it is a little mis-organised, but I'm not really complaining, the fun times totally out-weigh the mis-scheduling etc.
I will give you some tips about the cosplay competitions though, if you're registering to be in the competition that's awesome because you'll be guaranteed a seat in the threate where they hold it, but if you have friends who want to see the event that aren't cosplaying; be sure to tell them to wait outside the doors as soon as you go in for set-up. (The threatre fills up in like 2 minutes after they open the doors, and hundreds of people are sent to other theatres to watch it on a screen via the videocamera they have on the event.)
Also, pre-registering is a must if you want to actually get into the Con. On-the-day tickets sold out at 10am on the Saturday last year, it was crazy!